Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Turning Twenty Three and counting…

A couple of weeks ago, Sachin Tendulkar announced that he will consider about his retirement series by series. A statement by Sachin will always be a headline, and once it was of this magnitude, it was bound to send shockwaves throughout the world. It has almost become a fashion now, people commenting on what Sachin should do or shouldn’t do. Don’t worry; my article won’t be one of the same! 

Sachin, for many is the greatest batsman to play the game, for some he’s just behind Sir Donald Bradman, for others he lies somewhere in the top 5. I really don’t know where to place him as it would be unfair to compare him with batsmen of previous generations. In the case of Sachin, it is really hard, as he has endured which no sportsperson must have ever gone through. His presence lifted the hopes of the nation, his dismissal brought about despondency among the masses. It is hard to imagine any other person who had to face such ordeals. 

Sachin’s career has to a large extent symbolized everyone’s dream. As a small kid, you always wanted to be a national sensation at a very young age, be adored by your country-men, be a celebrity, best player for your team, play match winning knocks, take your team to victory in a stiff run chase, being the brave hearted warrior when everyone around you is struggling and above all a World Cup winner. The lesser I talk about the magic number of 100 international centuries it is for the better. One might argue that only half of his centuries have resulted in victories, but it is a number which has to be respected. It is a feat, which even the very best will find it hard to achieve. No matter how irrelevant one finds statistics, this is an accomplishment which everyone silently in the minds would wish was theirs. 

Back when it all started
He has had an illustrious career and it is remarkable how well he has sustained his performances for the last 23 years. Twenty three years! These are numbers which you generally don’t tend to hear for sports personalities. To still remain at the top is stupendous. At a tender age of 16, the nation had pinned their entire hopes on him, and he rarely failed to deliver. Perhaps many of us were realizing our unfulfilled dreams through Sachin. Maybe it’s no coincidence that India’s economy was on an upward rise as Sachin was growing up, and as he is reaching towards the end of a glorious career, the economy is going down. 

The World Cup victory for India last year was the icing on the cake. It was a dream for Sachin to be a part of a world cup winning squad, and for a billion viewers watching him with his child like smile run onto the field after the victory in the final, gave us hope, strength and the credence that one day, if we pursue our goals and dreams with utmost dedication, it will be fulfilled. 

 Virat Kohli summed it up best after winning the world cup final in 2011, by saying “Tendulkar has carried the burden of the nation for 21 years; It was time we carried him”. I think Sachin deserves his space to make his decision regarding when to leave the game. We owe him atleast that much. 

Having said this, it doesn’t mean he can go on irrespective of his performances, but for now he seems good enough to carry on for a while longer. His whole career has been scrutinized with disdain, for once if we stop marking each and every move of his during the twilight of his career, we might be able to watch the child in him play freely, relieved of all the burden on his shoulders. Until then, let us sit back and enjoy a once in a life time player, wield the magic with his willow and bring a smile on the faces of a billion people.

Rohit Ramachandran PoduvalAbout Rohit Ramachandran Poduval
A Classical Leg Spinner, Writer and Software Engineer. Please feel free to add my to your circles. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook


Maddie said...

Awesome podi :) keep them coming!!

rohitrp2003 said...

Thanks muddie :-)

Oliver Brett said...

Nice reflections Rohit. What's often forgotten is that his injuries were mounting up around 2004-06 and everyone feared the worst but he's managed his fitness so well since then.

rohitrp2003 said...

Thank you :) Yes and after that the period between 2007-2011 were one of the most productive phases of his career. He has had a moderate 2011-12. Lets hope hes amongst the runs against England :-)

Lola said...

Brilliant article!!! And what's more special: the first test against England will be played on the day he turns 23 years old in international cricket - 15 November. England is also the country against whom he scored his 1st test century. Coincidence or what?

rohitrp2003 said...

Thank you ! :-) Nice observation ! Lets hope the runs keep coming from his bat ! Please do have a look at my other articles as well :-)

Suneer said...

good one, like the point about scrutinising each of his moves...that's partly a price celebrities have to pay but with SRT, it's bit of a paradox that with his personal life so private, the only moves that get analysed are the ones he makes on the pitch, adding to the pressure.

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